Prominent West Indian cricketer Chris Gayle has categorically stated that he was not affiliated with any political party amid negative comments when he showed up at a rally organised by the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) on Saturday.
Gayle was spotted in photos on social media alongside members of the party during the event at Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) and many condemned his presence.
However, the Jamaican batsman clarified that he did not endorse any political party in Guyana. As a matter of fact, he sought to set the record straight by stating that the trip was an invitation to participate in a community outreach.
During last weekend’s activities, the PNCR was observing its 62nd anniversary at Congress Place in the mining town with a grand rally and cultural presentation.
He explained, “I, Christopher Gayle, would like to make it very clear that I in no way, manner or form endorse or support any individual or political party in Guyana. I have noted the many social media comments in relation to my recent presence in Linden and I wish to set the record. I was invited to Linden to participate in a community outreach.”
He further went on to say that meeting fans was a great outlet as a sportsman and condemned any attempts to tarnish his brand. When it comes to politics, Gayle stressed that he is apolitical.
“As a sports personality, I relish the opportunity to meet with my fans and also to reach out to any community under the neutral banner of sports. I am apolitical of any political commitment and strongly condemn attempts to tarnish my brand and personality.”
Ever since President David Granger announced March 2, 2020 as the election date, political parties have begun the race to campaign by rolling out manifestos and visiting their support base.
Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo had already called out the coalition last month as Cabinet outreaches continued, unabated. He had noted that approximately $2 billion had already been spent on what he essentially called political campaigning.
Jagdeo made this observation during a press conference in which he referenced statements from Director General of the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon. Harmon had defended the outreaches by saying that they were catered for in the budget.
“Harmon said it’s provided for in the Budget. They have spent about $2 billion on these outreaches. The outreach is part of their campaign,” Jagdeo said.